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. michele obama was certainly the star on opening night, but there were also two big name politicians from our area. former virginia governor tim kaine and maryland governor martin o'malley. the first lady, she never mentioned romney by name. that wasn't her job. she was focusing on her husband. but governor o'malley, he had no problem attacking the republican ticket. listen. >> mitt romney and paul ryan now say they want to take america back. and we have to ask, back to what? back to the failed policies that drove us into this deep recession? back to the days of record job losses? back to the days when insurance companies called being a woman a pre-existing condition? >> reporter: you can see governor martin o'malley spent a lot of his speech talking about health care and the economy. kaine called him a tough leader who puts results over ideology. >> he's -- he said he would end the war in iraq and he has. he said he'd draw down troops in afghanistan and today every single virginia national guard unit is home for the first time in a decade and we're so happy. >> reporter: coming up on nig
michele obama will deliver his speech tonight. maryland governor martin o'malley will also speak in prime time. as susan mcginnis reports, a misstep by the maryland governor has thrown democrats off message. >> reporter: the stage has been built, the party platform released and democrats are ready to kick off their 2012 convention. >> this has been such a historic time, i couldn't imagine not coming. >> reporter: but as the festivities begin, republicans won't let go of the question are americans better off than they were four years ago. >> they can't tell you that you're better off. >> reporter: the obama team opened the door to the attacks when some, including maryland governor martin o'malley had trouble answering the question. >> can you honestly say that people are better off today than they were four years ago? >> no, but that's not the question of this election. >> reporter: republicans pounced saying that's proof president obama's policies aren't working. since then the democrats regrouped and came out swinging. >> you want to know why we're better off? i've got a little bumper st
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